Match Preview: Exeter Chiefs v Newcastle Falcons

Match Preview: Exeter Chiefs v Newcastle Falcons

Exeter Chiefs will help to build on their strong home record against Newcastle Falcons when they meet on Saturday.

Newcastle have won on just one of their fifteen previous visits to Sandy Park in all competitions: 15-14 in November 2021.

Exeter Chiefs have lost their last two Gallagher Premiership Rugby matches since beating Bristol at Ashton Gate on 29 December. They have not lost three in a row in the tournament since November 2022.

They sit fifth in the table, just one point off a Play-Off spot

The Chiefs have the slight edge in recent meetings with the Falcons having won three of their last five clashes.

The Falcons’ most recent away win in Premiership Rugby was on their trip to Gloucester in November 2022.


Referee: Jack Makepeace

Assistant Referees: Anthony Woodthorpe and Gareth Holsgrove

TMO: Andrew Jackson

Exeter Chiefs: 15 Josh Hodge, 14 Dan John, 13 Zack Wimbush, 12 Joe Hawkins, 11 Olly Woodburn, 10 Harvey Skinner, 9 Will Becconsall, 1 Scott Sio, 2 Jack Yeandle (c), 3 Josh Iosefa-Scott, 4 Rusi Tuima, 5 Lewis Pearson, 6 Ethan Roots, 7 Richard Capstick, 8 Greg Fisilau

Replacements: 16 Dan Frost, 17 Danny Southworth, 18 Marcus Street, 19 Jacques Vermeulen, 20 Ross Vintcent, 21 Stu Townsend, 22 Will Haydon-Wood, 23 Will Rigg

Newcastle Falcons: 15 Elliott Obatoyinbo, 14 Adam Radwan, 13 Tom Penny, 12 Rory Jennings, 11 Ben Stevenson, 10 Brett Connon, 9 Sam Stuart; 1 Adam Brocklebank, 2 Jamie Blamire, 3 Eduardo Bello, 4 Philip van der Walt, 5 Sebastian de Chaves, 6 Freddie Lockwood, 7 Guy Pepper, 8 Callum Chick (captain).

Replacements: 16 Bryan Byrne, 17 Phil Brantingham, 18 Richard Palframan, 19 John Kelly, 20 Sam Cross, 21 Ben Douglas, 22 Cameron Hutchison, 23 Matias Moroni.

Oval Insights

Exeter Chiefs

  • Jacques Vermuelen has made the most dominant carries in the league (43); 41.3% of his carries have been dominant this season.
  • Exeter Chiefs have the best gainline success in the league (44.4%) and have scored the most tries, an average of 4.25 per 80 minutes.
  • The Chiefs have won fewer turnovers than any other team this season, an average of 5.2 per 80 minutes.
  • Exeter Chiefs have made an average of 12.3 entries to the opposition 22 per 80 minutes this season – more than any other team. They have also conceded the second-fewest red zone entries (100).

Newcastle Falcons

  • Guy Pepper made the most successful tackles in Round 12, a total of 23. He is the only player in the top three for tackles this season who hasn’t appeared in every round.
  • Adam Radwan has beaten 42 defenders so far this season – the second-highest total in the Premiership.
  • Jamie Blamire has won ten turnovers in nine appearances this season. He is joint-third in the league for turnovers won. Teammate Guy Pepper has also won nine.
  • 52.1% of the Falcons’ possessions this season have ended with kicks – more than any other team.

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